Archive for April, 2012

Working full time doesn’t leave much time for anything else the rest of the week. Add to that that perhaps on one of your only days off you spend time at the local animal rescue helping in any way you can. Maybe you dream of one day owning your very own rescue, but currently if you bring home one more animal your significant other might be tempted to leave you. Despite all these things you still feel like in some shape or form you could be doing more to help the blight of animals, be they domestic or exotic or endangered, anything that tickles your fancy. Then there is the case of money. In this day and age, some have it, many don’t.

You most likely have some change rolling around in the bottom of your purse or pockets. There may even be some laying around on the floor of your vehicle. Those bottles in the garage sure are stacking up mighty high. But how much change can really make a difference?
One can of dog food costs roughly 80 cents. One can of cat food costs about 50 cents. That one little can, can in fact fill someone’s belly for at least one day. That one small can makes a great difference in the life of a hungry animal.

In one month, saving our spare change, Dani saved $9.57. I saved $10.94. We took the change to our bank and used their CoinStar machine free of charge. We were then able to turn around and write a check to a rescue. We are striving to do this every month, and every month donate to a different animal rescue in the state. This month our donation will go to FIDO Dog Rescue in Ann Arbor.

We hope to make this fundraising opportunity go first state-wide and hopefully down the line, nation-wide. Please join our FB page ( and help spread the Spare Change Filling Furry Bellies movement.

Ashleigh and Dani, spare change saving experts!


Bobbie recently started helping rescue dogs on the westside of the state of Michigan. As she states, it does indeed just take one person to make a difference.

“What would life be like for you if you lived everyday, all day long on the end of a chain?? Would you have proper shelter from the elements?? Will anybody come play with me today?? I see my sister across the yard living as I do, but we can’t get close and be a pack like we should. Will anybody come untangle our chains today so we can have more than 3 ft of chain?? Will I ever get to run and play again?? Does anybody care about me?? The kids come and feed me, they give me a little love, but I want more… I remember before the baby came, when I use to live in the house and sleep with my humans… Will I ever get to do that again?? What did I do wrong?? Will I ever get off this chain?? I’m here… waiting… day after day…..

Sadly, this is life for many dogs living outside around the world. I met 2 wonderful dogs when I was living in Baldwin, Michigan on West US 10, which is not far from Lake Michigan. The winters get very cold up in Lake County, which is one of the poorest counties in Michigan. It was so difficult to find a job that I had to move and these dogs have been haunting me ever since.

Back in December 2011, I started a page on facebook called “Save the dogs (it just takes one person)”. I just couldn’t sit by any longer and watch others helping animals in need and not do my part. I’ve met some truly amazing people and they inspire me daily to keep fighting for these animals who have no voice. If we don’t take it upon ourselves to change the world, it will never change.

A few months ago I came across a page that just spoke to me, C.H.A.I.N.E.D. Inc a 501c3 in Detroit, Michigan. I emailed them asking for their help and advice on how I could help these dogs. They responded by donating 3 dog houses, 2 bags of large breed dog food, collars, toys and treats. I sacrificed my Easter and traveled to Detroit to get these gifts that they gave so willingly.

Many people have asked me why these dogs haven’t been taken away from the owner yet. I’ve called animal control in Lake County, Michigan, and spoke to them last winter about these dogs. They were suppose to go out with some straw, check on the dogs and call me back. That was months ago. And all though I have left many messages on their answering machine, no one has returned my call yet.

My goal is not to take any animals away from anyone or alert the authorities unless the animal is in mortal danger. I am trying to enhance the life of the dogs who live on chains 24/7 by providing safe fenced in yards, insulated dog houses, food assistance, treats, toys, and the love they so desperately need. This is only possible through the donations of generous people. More than anything I want to educate owners on how to become better parents and guardians to their furbabies.


Bobbie Havlik”


Posted: April 27, 2012 in Fun Photos
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Phew, the weekend is finally upon us! We thought Jack here looks just how a lot of us feel at the end of the long work week. Enjoy your weekend!

Usually pet owners question nothing when getting prescriptions for their pets. “Yes, it’s expensive but it makes Fido feel better!” I’m right there with you. My dog Ozzy had a ligament tear (which eventually became two tears) and the vet I was seeing at the time recommended he use Deramaxx. No problem… first. It was supposed to be temporary, but as his condition worsened so his medication regimen continued. It was costing me $16 for 4 tablets, which lasted 8 days. I began questioning this on many levels. I work as a pharmacy technician, so I started asking the pharmacist questions about possible substitutes. There were actually a few options of NSAID and pain reliever combinations that were cheap. When I called to ask my vet about possibly going this route, I received a “Well there is a generic for Deramaxx that is cheaper.” Really? You didn’t think I needed to know this two months ago? Long story short, and many mishaps later with this vet, I was getting third opinions from a different vet clinic. I found a new vet and nothing but great experiences working as a team with her to make Ozzy’s life better. The medications recommended by the pharmacist worked perfectly for my dog. (Mobic and Ultram combo in case you’re in the same situation.)

Second problem, Ozzy was a mastermind at spitting out pills. Luckily, I could crush these and stick them in his food. Not everyone is this lucky. For you, I HIGHLY recommend finding a compounding pharmacy near you! (No not every pharmacy can compound.) These places can virtually be miracle workers! They can take that aweful medication and make it into a tuna or chicken flavored suspension so Fifi doesn’t claw your eyes out when you try to get her to take it. For dogs, they can take the medication and turn it into a tasty biscuit. For small animals, they can make many things into transdermals so that you can put it on a bald/shaved area of skin. Another huge benefit is that while many drugs are only commercially made in a certain strength, these pharmacies can order the drug(s) in the raw material and make them into the strength you need. (Example: While made in only 10mg commercially, they could possibly make it for the 3mg you need.)

When you work with both your vet and your pharmacist you can make life easier and cheaper for you and your pet.

In our previous article we mentioned how we would try to keep you updated on good deals we found on things such as pet food, treats, and litter. Since many of us are on tighter budgets these days, we’ve listed some of this week’s best deals in the MI area we found. The items listed below would make great items to donate to your local shelter since they don’t cost much, but will help out a lot.

For those of you who coupon, we also mentioned coupons you can use to make these items even cheaper than they already are!

If you have a Dollar General nearby, here are some very inexpensive items you can buy this week to donate to your local shelter. (Remember to check your individual store’s ad and coupon policy just to be sure they are the same. Not all stores use the same ads or policies, so always double check!)

Purina Mighty Dog Dog Food 5.5 oz can

One can of dog food is only 60 cents! (plus, there is a printable coupon for $1 off 6 cans)!

So if you use the coupon, you’d only be paying $2.60 for 6 cans of dog food!

Here is a link to the printable coupon:

Whiskas Cat Food Tray 3.5 oz

It is only 60 cents per tray of food, but if you are into saving and clipping coupons, check to see if you have a Redplum coupon from March 4th that will give you 75 cents off of 6 trays.

Each tray will only cost you 48 cents when you buy 6 with the coupon!

Purina T Bonz Dog Treats 5.5 oz

This week they are marked at $1.75, but if you have a Redplum coupon from January 29th for $1 off 1, then you only pay 75 cents each when you buy 2!

Purina Alpo Canned Dog Food 13.2 oz can

Marked at only 80 cents per can (plus a SmartSource coupon from April 1st for $1.50 off 10 cans) makes your total only .65 per can when you buy 10!

Purina Whisker Lickins Cat Treats

They are currently $1.35 per bag, but when paired with a Redplum coupon from January 29th for $1 off 2, you only pay .85 each when you buy 2 bags!

There are also some very similar deals at Family Dollar as well this week. (Make sure to double check their ad and coupon policies to see if you can get these great deals as well.) Family Dollar also has a great deal on kitty litter this week and animal shelters can never have too much kitty litter!

Purina Tidy Cats Performance Litter 20 lbs

Marked at only $4.50 until April 28, plus a Redplum coupon from January 29th for $1 off 1, making it only $3.50 for the whole 20 lbs!

As much as we all might want to, we can’t bring home all of those fuzzy faces we see in our local animal shelter. BUT that does not mean we still can’t help make their lives better while they wait eagerly for someone to adopt them! You might be surprised by some of the things your local animal shelter is in need of, and how some of it may just be laying around your own home at this very moment. Why not put those items to good use? Donating old towels, newspapers, blankets, and other items can make a big difference.

We’ve compiled a list of items that most animal shelters are always in need of, but feel free to call your local shelter to find out how you can help. No amount of time or any donation is ever too small, and if everyone just pitches in a little bit, we can make a huge difference in the lives of animals in need.

Old Newspapers:

Instead of tossing out your old newspapers when you’re done with them, you can donate them to your local shelter. Newspaper is often used to line the bottoms of cat cages and needs to be changed often This inexpensive donation item makes a huge difference. If you have friends who you know toss out their leftover newspapers, you can ask them for their old papers to donate as well.

Plastic Bags:

Those plastic bags a lot of us bring our groceries home in are wonderful donation items. When dogs at the shelter are taken for walks plastic bags come in very handy for picking up any droppings that may occur along the way. Not only does donating your plastic bags help the shelter, but it also is a great way to see that the plastic bag is reused.

Leashes, Harnesses, and Collars:

We’ve all seen just how excited a dog can get when you pull out their leash to take them for a walk. Shelter dogs are no exception, and love getting out to sniff around and get some exercise. If you have a leash, harness, or collar that your pet has outgrown or no longer needs, your local shelter is sure to have an animal that it would be just perfect for!

Cat Litter:

You think your cat(s) at home go through a lot of litter? Imagine how quickly a shelter full of cats can go through it!

Food & Treats:

All those cute little faces you see in the shelter need plenty of food to stay happy and healthy. Dog and cat food donations are always appreciated, and some shelters (depending on the type of animals they take in) may even accept other foods such as guinea pig or bird food. Donating pet food can be made cheaper by watching for sales and using coupons. (We’ll try to keep you guys posted on weekly deals we find in the Michigan area!)

As for treats, lets be honest, who doesn’t love getting treats? Newspapers often feature coupons on both dog treats and cat treats. Combining coupons with sales can dramatically cut down the cost of pet treats, making them an easy-on-your-budget item to donate.

Old Towels & Blankets:

People often throw away old and faded blankets and towels, but these items make really good donation items! Having a towel to dry them off and a warm blanket to lay on can make any shelter animal much happier. If you don’t have any blankets or towels at home you want to get rid of, you can always find cheap ones at thrift stores, garage sales, and even some dollar stores!


You’d be surprised just how far your dollar can go in a shelter. Every donation makes a difference, so don’t ever feel that your donation is too small.

Your Time:

Donating your time won’t cost you any money at all, but it will make such a big difference to the animals you’re helping. Most animal shelters will accept volunteers, and even just donating a few hours of your week can really help out. Animals need fed, bathed, walked, and played with. It also helps socialize animals for their future homes when they have a variety of people to play and interact with at the shelter. That little bit of affection you give an animal could be the best part of their day, as well as yours.

Basic Cleaning Products:

Items such as paper towels, hand soap, toilet paper, hand sanitizer, and products such as window cleaner, toilet bowl cleaner, bleach are often over-looked items that make great donations. These items will help keep the shelter clean and are items that can often be found right at your local dollar store!

Cat or Dog Beds:

If you have a gently used dog bed or cat bed that you no longer have need for, there are plenty of shelter animals that would love a comfy place to sleep.

These are just some of the items shelters often are in need of, but you can often visit your local shelter’s website to find out just what they might need at that point and time. The workers and animals will appreciate any amount of help you can offer, so we hope this article inspires people to take action in any way they can. No donation is ever too small, and every little bit helps.

Welcome to MiCritterChitter

Posted: April 22, 2012 in Fun Photos

After reading an article recently that received much gratitude in relation to information about animal abuse, we decided to put together a website that would help inform more people about all things animal related. People are always looking for good information when it comes to animals. However, most websites often cater to one breed/species or another, leaving people to search all over the web for sites that aren’t ladden with misinformation. In which case, tends to be harder than it sounds.

So here we are! No we’re not veterinarians or even technicians for that matter. We are but two animal lovers who decided that we would take a journalistic turn on the information world. We don’t know everything there is to know about every single animal on this planet but we are determined to do our absolute best and bring you great information from doing our very own research. What we hope to accomplish is a wide array of topics ranging from spotlights on various animal rescues, breed profiles, guest articles from people with personal experiences and expertises, fundraising, and heart warming animal stories just to name a few. We even hope that in the future we will be able to take articles from people like you who submit their stories and post them for the world to read.

Without further ado, we bring you Critter Chitter!

Ashleigh and Dani


Dani and Ashleigh with Bee Bee, a puppy mill survivor. She never felt grass for the first 3 years of her life.